A detour in the land of Don Quixote.

“Fortune is guiding our affairs better than we ourselves could have wished.” -Don Quixote to Sancho Panza in Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote

Very often, this almost foolish sentiment rings true. But, when the sun has set, the stories you collect are the only meaningful currency you have.  That mingled with the people we meet and the bread we break and the wines we share.

El Toboso.

We could not resist taking a detour from our trip heading south from Madrid. First to El Toboso, where we arrived on a Monday when most things were closed. There were just a few school children chattering in the plaza by the grand church. Here a statue of Don Quixote kneeling to Dulcinea adds to to the charm of the place. 

Statue of Don Quixote kneeling to Dulcinea in front of the church in El Toboso

Seeing giants.

After a stroll in the village, we headed out to Campo de Criptana. We wanted to see some giants! These are the Molinos de viento (windmills) that Quixote mistook for giants.

It was a perfect day despite rapidly setting in jet lag. Wandering through the narrow streets of Campo de Criptana with its two toned houses in white and blue and the taking in the grand vistas from the top of the hill, my mind wandered. One could not help but imagine how these streets and places looked at the time of Miguel de Cervantes.

Tilting at windmills.

I sometimes feel that, in this age of immense connectivity, we flail against imaginary or insignificant foes. We worry about nothing. We, in the process lose sight of greater injustices. We lose in the fog, the injustices our elected officials impose upon us, our religious leaders who divide and conquer, our social heroes who chase a dollar. Sometimes, aren’t not our lances aimed at the wrong giants? You know what I am talking about.

“Cambiar el mundo, amigo Sancho, que no es locura ni utopía, sino Justicia!” -Don Quixote.

In vino veritas.

I am not chasing social redemption or advocating meting justice today, but this was just a detour. We are still seeking friends and wines. That much is true. And the wines of La Mancha and the ones from further south. We are all seeking our Dulcinea.

Road in the La Mancha Spanish wine region .

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